Sock Pal socks are finished, packaged and ready for plunking in the mail. Woo! Another FO!
Can you stand it?
I have to say, I am LOVING the ArtYarns Ultramerino4. People, after a nice steam blocking, they became...EVEN SOFTER.
Yes, it's true.
Now, can I explain that this yarn is already so soft that I don't think there is anything comparable in the world of sock yarn. So, it's almost impossible to fathom they could actually become SOFTER after blocking, but it's true.
I can't buy up enough of this stuff. Just ask Grumperina (who, by the way, modeled the sock for me on her size 8.75" circumference foot, but sadly the lighting was just not right). Hehehe.
My only issue is the slight pooling on the more contrasty (is that even a word?) colorways, but there are so many wonderful slightly variegated and solid choices that it really isn't an issue. AND, this alternate Feather and Fan pattern I whipped up does a good job of forcing the variegation into nice, even striping.
Take a good look:
Bascially, I took the tried-and-true Feather and Fan pattern, and made it a multiple of 12, as opposed to a multiple of 18. This makes it easier to work into basic sock sizes and their respective cast on requirements.
I then added ribbing on the sides to make the sock nice and snug on various foot circumferences. So far, it works well on my foot -- although it isn't as snug as I'd like -- which is a very narrow 7.5". It fits very well on an 8", 8.5", 8.75" and a 9" (my sock pal's size). This is mainly because those simple side ribs pull the lace panels closer -- like two giant ribs.
It's a little hard to see here since I'm not stretching it out, but you get the gist. It also adds a nice detail overall.
Here, where the instep and gusset start to meet the stockinette on the foot, you can see the difference between the two stitch patterns and how the colorway interacts in terms of pooling. It's hard to see, but there is also a nice slip-stitch border between the Feather and fan pattern and the purling on the ribs. Just imagine it...
Can you tell how much I don't want to ruin my blocking efforts by stretching this all out?
[Voice In My Head] "So, why didn't you just photograph it all before blocking Black Olive?"
[Me] "Well, Voice In My Head, because it was already dark when I finished Kitchenering the second toe and pictures in that sort of light are usually pointless. Plus, I think I already photographed detailing in a previous post. So, get off my back, ok?"
Fear not, peeps, I'll be casting on for another pair of these soon. See, this pattern is pretty easy to memorize, very easy to modify and gets great results with variegated yarn. What's not to love? Therefore, it could become my new mindless sock pattern.
Eventually, I'll be writing the entire thing up and either posting it here or elsewhere.
Here's another detail shot of the toe -- mainly because I was finally able to block a toe without all that puckering from the toe decreases. Woo Hoo!
Now, it's off to the post office where I try to overcome my "thing" about mailing out packages.